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Systemic view of processes --
Processes are often equated with systems, or parts of systems, as a series of actions, changes, or functions, typically predefined, bringing about a result. The term 'process' is often equated with 'method' or 'system'.

Processes in the business model --
In the BAi business model, process, or processes, is one of the four fundamental aspects of this systemic view of the business organization. In this construct, processes contain and reflect the 'know-how' of an organization or value system. The processes of a system are the activities and competencies that produce the outputs -- the function of the system in its environment. The processes for a business organization are described by the process aspect and the process architecture.

Processes as systems --
From a systemic perspective, processes are essentially systems and systems are one mega process. The same principles, rules, guidelines for the design, development and improvement of processes holds true for systems. An organization can be viewed as a process or system. It has inputs, processes (or sub processes), a structure, outputs, an environment, and a purpose.

For example, an adaptive learning organization has a built-in learning and adaptation process that continually adapts the organization to a changing environment, responds to threats, takes advantage of opportunities, and learns from its decisions.

A process is a sequence of behavior that constitutes a system and has a goal producing function. Process behavior displayed by a system may be reactive, responsive, or active. (Ackoff. 1999, pp 53-54)

Systemic vs. responsive processes view of processes --
Though all systems are made up of processes, not all assemblies of processes are necessarily systems. Groups of processes, from a systemic perspective are viewed and treated as systems. The responsive processes perspective takes an entirely different view. Source: Stacey, 2007, pp 264 - 265.

Systems thinking view --
Systems thinkers us the word 'process' to mean the interaction of the parts of a system to produce that system, whether that system be real or a mental construct. In human terms this amounts to the assumption that, in their interaction, people either actually are a system or that they understand their interaction as if it were a system. A 'systems' view of organization takes a macro perspective of the organization as one monolithic process that can be reified, shaped, and chosen. See systemic and reify.

Responsive processes view --
In responsive processes thinking, the interaction between persons is understood to produce further interaction between them. In responsive processes thinking, people are thought of not as parts producing a system but as interdependent persons producing patterns of relationships, which produce them as selves at the same time. From the view of responsive processes thinking, there is no notion of system at all. A 'responsive processes' view takes a micro perspective in which the macro emerges from in many local processes of local human interaction which cannot be reified and talked about as if they could be influenced from the outside.

Comparison of 'systemic process' vs. 'responsive processes' --
The aspects of organization from each perspective --

  • Entity
    • systemic process -- Parts of a system, which could be individuals, routines, etc., and which can be thought of as subsystems, such as mental models. Psychological assumptions are those of individual-centered cognitivism, etc.
    • responsive processes -- Embodied interdependent human persons. A social, relational view of human psychology is taken
  • Process
    • systemic process -- Interaction of parts
    • responsive processes -- Responsive acts of mutual recognition by persons
  • What is becoming
    • systemic process -- The system, a bounded whole which exists at a higher level than the parts, has properties of its own, and acts causally on the parts
    • responsive processes -- Coherent patterns of interaction, of the process itself. Patterns of interaction produce further patterns of interaction and nothing else. These constitute individual and collective identities
  • Causality
    • systemic process -- Dual causality of the rationalist, objectively observing autonomous individual and the formative cause of the system unfolding a mature form of itself imputed by the observer
    • responsive processes -- Transformative causality in which continuity and potential transformation emerge at the same time. The potential for transformation arises in the capacity of nonlinear interaction to amplify difference and in the inherent possibility of spontaneity in human agents
  • Theory of time
    • systemic process -- Linear view of time where past is factually given and future is yet to be unfolded in developmental stages
    • responsive processes -- Time as the living present in which both accounts of the past and expectations for the future are formed in the perpetual construction of the future in the present
  • Conceptual space
    • systemic process -- Spatial metaphor of parts inside the system and the system outside the parts
    • responsive processes -- No spatial metaphor in that human action itself is not inside or outside of anything. So there is no society or organization at a level higher than human interaction
  • Emergence
    • systemic process -- Not central to the process and, where used, equated with chance happenings as the opposite of intention
    • responsive processes -- Central to the process of human interaction where emergence is understood in terms of the interplay of human intentions. Emergence is not seen as the polar opposite of intention and what emerges does so because of the interplay of what people intend to do, not by chance
  • Doubling of process
    • systemic process -- Autonomous individuals can stand outside a process, such as strategising, and shape it, that is, use another process to shape a process
    • responsive processes -- No doubling of process since there are only the processes of human interaction and no one can take an external vantage point in relation to this
  • Practice
    • systemic process -- Practice is a system of routines, etc.
    • responsive processes -- Practice is the local, social activity of communication, power relating and evaluative choice
  • Experience
    • systemic process -- The use of tools and techniques to make decisions and act
    • responsive processes -- Historical, social processes of consciousness and self-consciousness in interaction with others. The world we together create in our thought
  • Organisation
    • systemic process -- A thing to be moved around
    • responsive processes -- Patterns of relating in which one can only participate